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Many of us are in daily discussions about what our teams have to do and how our teams operate. Many of the discussions focus on getting things done, progressing a plan and reporting on outputs/outcomes

For those in the change and transformation world it can be about project plans, business sponsors and technical solutions and in many ways it can be about the processes we will follow and the methodologies and delivery models we will set up.

This morning I spotted an ->article by Wolfgang Goebl one of the founders of the Intersection Group. The article was centred on the groups approach to business design and architecture and it made me think if we are all jumping ahead to get things done without maybe ensuring we get to the heart of who we all are and what we really believe matters, or at least attempting to get to it.

Wolfgang poses a number of areas for discussion.

Who we really are…

What is your enterprise all about? What is your story? What is your purpose in society? Who are the people behind it? What is their motivation? This is the identity of the enterprise; what it stands for and the reason for its existence. I’m sure many of us cover off aspects of this step – what is the business about? What’s the narrative? And what does it exist for? I’m sure at some level we have this covered

We definitely spend time communicating who is who and what they do too.. but do we get to the heart of what the people stand for? what motivates them? why they are part of the team? what they bring? and what to expect from them?

Yes I’m sure in the comms that come out throughout the year we all find out more about the people in the teams but as a snapshot and at the start of looking at the opportunity to change are we doing enough?

This for me is more than stakeholder analysis that looks for resistors and supporters – this is about what difference the people leading the teams want to make – what does good look like to them and how will they change and contribute to the change effort ahead.

What we really offer ..

What will you actually provide to people? What are offering? How is what you offer going to change people’s lives? This is the experience the enterprise aims to create for customers and others. Again I’m sure we do cover off what services we offer or will be offered. And there will be aspects of what’s going to be changing in the services being offered as part of our effort. But does the description come close to “what’s going to change in peoples life’s”

This area often is covered off by the benefits of what we will do – cost optimisation, better utilisation, new functionality and it could go as far as customer satisfaction and NPS scores.

But the phrase “change peoples life’s” and “create experiences” feels far bolder statements than those that are answered in the business case.

The infamous “as is” and “to be” statements are often missing – a day in the life of the world today and a day in the life of the world tomorrow – how people feel and think and what people say and do today and what you hope will be different tomorrow.

And then what we need to deliver on it

What do you need to realise that? What are the parts that make it work? How are those parts related? What can you achieve with them? This is the architecture that holds the enterprise together. What are your current capabilities

Now my money is on this aspect is pretty well covered .. it’s the more tangible area of what processes, systems and data needs to change and what’s important to get right in terms of standards, security, dependencies, testing and training and all the areas that are more in the head space than the heart space.

It’s often where so much time has been spent that it can feel like we have a solution looking for a problem. Where we have a clear plan on what will be delivered and may have given thought to what needs to be removed/decommissioned/phased out in the end state to make the transition to the new possible

For me reflecting on the article is points loud and clear to the more humanistic aspects of change, the more holistic aspects that enable people to really understand what will matter and how they can support each other as they go on the journey.

Take a look at the intersection group work .. it really does make you think beyond the head and into the heart .. and maybe embracing some of their ideas and approaches may lead to better outcomes and buy in to the many programmes of change you are running in your business.

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About the author

Lisa Woodall

Lisa Woodall

Advising Member
Intersection Group
Southampton, England

Lisa is an advising member at Intersection Group and a passionate Enterprise Architect with 23 years experience in the Insurance sector before joining Ordnance Survey (uk) in 2017. She specialises in Organisational Design, Enterprise & Business Architecture and Portfolio ManagementHR, CEO's, Teams and Different departments.